What Is Inbox 0?

inbox0I wanted to share this little concept I studied a while back which helps me be much more productive. In fact – Since I started utilizing this concept I found myself looking on my email much less.

So what is the inbox 0 concept and why is it so powerful? Well for starter let me talk about one of today’s biggest time wasters in the world, it is out email inbox, we look at it so many times, I bet you found yourself checking your email at least 10 times today already.

How do we fight this addiction of refreshing our email? we try to make it as empty as possible…

Now let’s talk about people that have multiple email accounts, I suggest you make a forwarding rule that will centralize all of your emails and make them go to only one. And for those of you who have work email and personal email, I suggest separating the two and making all work related emails go to the work email, and all personal emails go to ONE personal email inbox.

This will save you lots of time checking only ONE / TWO emails instead of many more. Now let’s go back to the inbox 0 concept, so do you really need to have 0 emails in your inbox? No… not really, but the smaller that number is, the less cluttered your mind will be, when I come back from a vacation and have 120 unread emails I sometimes get into two days marathon trying to minimize them, and I find my mind thinking about those unread emails instead of focusing on the important things that I need to do.

Another method you can use to minimize your stay in your inbox is to set automatic rules, in gmail those are called “filters”, so whenever there is a known email coming  you could automatically mark it as read and move it to another folder (in gmail – label).

And lastly, I think that the most important part is to archive posts that you don’t really need to reply to anymore, so for example if you got an email saying “you’ve got payment”, and you already processed it, then go ahead and archive it, or if you’ve got an email from someone asking you a question, and you answered, you can go ahead and archive that email too, that way your email will be much cleaner.

Gmail only tip – You can use keyboard shortcuts, it’s actually pretty easy to use and you just need to activate it in the settings, but once you use it, you can over email with ‘j’ / ‘k’, click ‘x’ to select them and ‘e’ to archive them, now that’s powerful time saver;)

Go ahead and use this, start striving for inbox 0, I know it’s pretty hard to get rid of all of the emails, but I’m sure you’ll do your best.

Please let me know how you used it in the comments…



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  • Laura

    Very helpful tips Tomer! Everytime I return to my email after a few days of not opening it, I always get that sinking feeling after I see the number of my unread emails. These steps will really help me to declutter and organize all my emails so quickly and efficiently. Thanks a lot!

  • http://www.stayathomejohn.com John Whiteman

    Good useful tip. I have alway found myself wasting a few hours over the course of each day reading email and still have loads I haven’t gotten to. Thanks for this. Like the shortcuts for gmail. Great timesaver tip that.